Monday, November 16, 2009

1TB Hard Drives: Simple external, NAS, & NAS w/RAID

There are many options, brands, and features available in the external hard drive arena. I have narrowed the list based on price, quality, and personal experience with these brands. I highly recommend a NAS with at least 2 drives for the simple convenience of always on access and the redundancy of saving your data to 2 drives.

For simple external HD:

For network solutions with RAID (backs up your data on 2 drives):

For network solutions with one drive:

Here are some things you'll need to know:

  • NAS = Network attached storage (router -> connects to HD -> accessible from all computers on network)
  • RAID 1 = Backup data across 2 drives so if one fails, the other has an exact copy
  • Gigabit Ethernet = faster transfer rates over compatible networks (get it so your future proof)
  • 16MB Cache = faster access to data: there are lots of drives with 32MB for a good price too
  • OEM HD = no cables included (which is not needed for a NAS)
  • 7200 RPM = standard speed for desktop HDs but is more power hungry for external drives
  • USB vs Firewire = all my drives are USB since firewire ports are not as common

Go with the NAS so you can set it up, access your files on your network from any computer, and have the peace of mind that it's backed up on 2 drives.